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German Chancellor Olaf Scholz to Visit India in October: Focus on Trade, Defense, and Economic Ties

2 weeks ago
thedialog
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German Chancellor Olaf Scholz

Photo: Wikimedia Commons 

 

German Chancellor Olaf Scholz is scheduled to visit India in October to engage in wide-ranging talks with Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

The discussions will primarily focus on enhancing bilateral trade and economic relations.

 

Improving Business Environment

German Ambassador to India, Philipp Ackermann, emphasized on Friday that improving the “ease of doing business” in India will be a key agenda during Chancellor Scholz’s visit. Ackermann noted that the visit is expected to occur in the second half of October, with dates currently being finalized.

 

Unique Inter-Governmental Consultations

Dr. Philipp Ackermann highlighted the significance of the upcoming inter-governmental consultations, an exercise exclusive to India and Germany. “The chancellor will travel to Delhi accompanied by parts of his cabinet and several German ministers,” Ackermann said.

This visit will also review the Green and Sustainable Partnership (GSTP) between India and Germany, established two years ago.

 

Expanding Defense Ties

Defense cooperation is set to be a prominent topic in the talks. German defense major Thyssenkrupp Marine Systems (TKMS) and India’s state-run Mazagon Dock Shipbuilders Ltd (MDL) have signed a framework agreement to jointly bid for the Indian Navy’s Rs 43,000 crore contract for six stealth submarines under the P-75 India project. The bidding process ends in August, with the defense ministry likely to finalize the winner by the end of this year or early next year.

Ackermann mentioned that more German defense companies are showing interest in the ‘Make in India’ initiative within the defense sector.

 

Growing Confidence in Indian Market

Ambassador Ackermann also noted a growing confidence and trust among German businesses in India, indicating a willingness to invest.

According to the recently released German Indian Business Outlook 2024 survey, nearly six in 10 German companies plan to increase their investments in India during the current financial year. Additionally, 78% of companies expect rising sales, and 55% forecast higher profits.

 

Diverse German Investments

Currently, over 2000 German companies operate in India, with investments spanning various sectors, including transportation, electrical equipment, metallurgical industries, services (particularly insurance), chemicals, construction, trading, and automobiles.

This visit by Chancellor Scholz is poised to further strengthen the multifaceted relationship between India and Germany, enhancing cooperation in trade, defense, and sustainable development.